Sunday, September 29, 2013

The Sweet Joys of Fall

It's a testament to the sweet joys of fall that I'm enjoying them so much I want to write a blog post about it. You may have noticed that I haven't posted in about 2 months. School started, I've been pregnant, we moved - things were crazy. But I'm back. Big stuff is happening around here these days. I'll probably kick myself in future years if I don't keep any record of thoughts before having our first baby.

Anyway, the latest:

1) I'm loving cooking fall foods. It's been a LONG time since I've felt like cooking anything, mostly as a result of pregnancy and morning sickness but also because now that we don't have a dishwasher in our new apt, cleaning up after cooking is more of a chore. I know, I'm spoiled.

So lately, because the weather has been lovely and cool and I've been wearing sweaters, I started craving and cooking fall foods. Within the past week, I made butternut squash soup and pumpkin chocolate chip bread. Both were delicious (and both are on my pinterest boards if you're interested).

1.5) Yesterday, Todd and I went to a local pick-your-own farm and orchard where we got a bunch of crisp and juicy apples to make apple pie and apple dumplings. While we were there, we also picked our own head of cauliflower (that was a first). Last night we made cauliflower soup with fresh cauliflower. It was delicious (and also on pinterest if you're interested).

2) Last weekend, Todd had a study course in Philadelphia for his anesthesia boards. Even though he was busy most of the weekend, I went with him for a little getaway and to see Philly. Neither of us have been before. While, for me, most of the weekend consisted of sitting around in a motel room way on the outskirts of Philly or grading papers in the local Barnes and Noble, Todd spent most of the weekend in a conference room in a hotel down the street getting his brain crammed full of study and review tips.

On our way home that weekend, we stopped in Philadelphia and got to tour Independence Hall, see the Liberty Bell, walk down Elfreth's Alley, and grab a Philly cheesesteak sandwich from Reading Terminal Market. It was quick, but fun to get a taste of that strangely bipolar city. It was like part-metropolis, part-historical beauty, part-scary ghetto.

3) Pregnancy doesn't count as a sweet joy of fall. Mostly my thoughts on pregnancy are: 

a) I hate the doctor. I hate going to the doctor ALL the time. I hate that the doctor's office seems to arbitrarily make appointments for me for no reason whatsoever. And it's only going to get more frequent as the pregnancy progresses. Ugh.  

b) I don't feel like throwing up all the time, but I still feel all screwed up. Nothing works the same anymore. My body doesn't feel like my body anymore. I can't tell if I'm getting fat because I'm not exercising like I used to or if it's just the baby getting bigger. I always used to get irritated when pregnant women would say they felt so big. I thought, "Duh, there's a baby inside of you. You're supposed to get big. It's okay to be bigger than you're used to." But in's totally disconcerting.

4) Hopefully on Tuesday, we'll be finding out if our baby is a boy or a girl!!!! I'm really excited to know. I feel like everything will feel more real and I'll be able to start planning and shopping :) Any guesses on the gender? Todd thinks boy. I think girl. Whoever is in there seems like a really active baby. Every time we see or hear him/her at the doctor, he/she is moving.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Climbing with Apes

Okay, I'll admit it -- I tried to lure you with the catchy title. So we weren't climbing with furry primates, but rather my good friend and ex-roommate, April. And these pictures may or may not be from March...that's right, too many months ago to be worth counting. So sue me. At least you're finally getting actual pictures of us climbing instead of those random models I picked for our last climbing post. :)

So, in March, our good friend April came up to visit us in Columbia, and we used one of our guest passes at the gym to take her on her first (I think) climbing trip. She took to it like an ape to bananas ;)

Here are a few of me. I liked this climb because I had to cross over a few wall faces. And the pictures make me look like I'm a legit climber (even if I'm mostly weak sauce and afraid to do crazy climber stuff).

 Here are a few of Todd. Look at those calf muscles! Get it, baby!

And here are some pictures from the last wall we climbed on. Again, it was fun because we were climbing in that corner, going back and forth from one wall to the other. Todd was the photographer, so he didn't get any pictures on this wall.

April was amazing! It was her first time, but she climbed 5 or 6 climbs, each one getting progressively harder. It was pretty impressive. And it was so great to hang out with her. Miss you, Apes!

 And here's me and the love -- perfect climbing buddy.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Dad Wiese's visit

Dad came out for nine days in order to see Katie and Richard and the boys and Becky and I. The way things worked out it felt like several vacations in one: Becky and I had a little time to spend with just Dad, then we had a weekend where Katie and the boys came and stayed with us, then there was more time with just us and Dad, and finally, we all went and stayed with Katie and Richard and the boys.

Right after we picked Dad up from the airport we made a stop at the tidal basin so we could appreciate this year's cherry blossoms.

Dad, trying to fill things in on top.

Isn't she gorgeous!?

Since Richard was away at National Guard duty for the weekend, Katie, Tyler, and Aiden came and stayed with us. The highlights of their time with us included lots of legos, watching and re-watching Wreck it Ralph, trips to parks in the area, and a fun day in church where, surprisingly, both boys had a great time in their respective nursery and primary class.

Aiden and Becky queuing up a movie to watch on her phone.

Watching the Canadian Geese.

We had a few relaxing days at home with Dad, then were back on the road, this time to spend a few days in Warfordsburg with Kate and Richard. The highlights again included toys, movies, trips to local parks, and celebrating Tyler's fourth birthday.

We even squeezed in seeing this movie on Saturday and a trip to the Maryland side of Great Falls before taking Dad back to the airport.

Becky next to the historic C&O canal with the working lock and museum is in the background.

Now that everyone has returned to their own houses our apartment seems very quiet and we're back to the reality of cooking for ourselves each night!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

For Posterity: Christmas 2011 - Snow Canyon Hike

Continuing on with Christmas 2011, my grandpa, who has led hikes in Southern Utah for as long as I can remember, took our family on a short hike in Snow Canyon State Park. Todd said he especially enjoyed it because, although he has been on a lot of hikes in Southern Utah, he has never had a guide with him to talk about the rock formations and native wildlife.

 Here is Daniel, at the top of the world:
 Me, Dan, Uncle Jeff:

 Here, Angie joins Grandpa in telling us about the birdlife:
At some point, and for some reason I can't remember right now, our family was split into two groups and we met up mid-hike. Here we are, reuniting and stopping for a food break:
And dumping excessive amounts of sand out of our shoes...oh, right, that was just me:
 This is a cool juxtaposition of the sandstone on one side of the trail and the lava rock on the other:
 The following photos show that my brothers like to climb things...and pose:

Here is the whole group just underneath some pioneer names written on the rock:

 And these are just some fun little peepholes nearby:

Sorry, for the bad storytelling. (At this rate, I may as well go back to showing pictures of the different rooms in our apartment) I'll try to ramp up the humor in the next post...and not write two in a row.